Category Archives: Special Moments
Everything from first words and first steps to everything that puts a smile on your face.
This past weekend was the 11th annual Nevada Women’s Expo. I had never been before, but had always wanted to go. Turns out, I finally got my chance – but not exactly in the way I had envisioned or planned.
I have a friend with whom I keep in touch through Facebook (yes, we all have those friends – the ones we never physically see or get together with, but we know intimate details of their lives from reading their posts). Out of the blue she sent me a message asking if I might be interested in being a makeover model for a woman doing a showcase at the Women’s Expo. Umm, YES! I see all those makeovers on TV and always (secretly) thought how fun it would be to take part in one, and then reality would appear and remind me saying “yeah right, who do you think you are?” Well, reality took a slap in the face on this one because your’s truly got to be a model for a day!
I had been complaining (yeah, I do that occasionally) about my hair being too long and needing to get it cut, just hadn’t gotten a chance to call and make an appointment (because picking up the phone and dialing takes so long you know… ha!). So, this makeover opportunity couldn’t have come at a better time. I was going to get my hair cut, my makeup done and get to put on an evening gown to feel absolutely beautiful. It was going to be a full glamour makeover. Being the only woman in a house full of boys – Bring It On!
I spoke with the woman doing the makeovers and we talked about hair style and about the time requirements (meeting at the department store to try on dresses, what (un-godly early) time we had to be at the Expo on “show day,” etc.). I met her a few days later so she could take my “before” picture. Then last Saturday I spent three hours at her salon while she cut about six inches off my hair (it was loooong) and added some color to the ends. Let me say that I never color my hair. Once (maybe twice) in college I got hi-lights, but other than that I am au naturale – and I like it that way. I do actually really love the color of my hair (thanks Mom & Dad).
So, just this past Saturday was the makeover / fashion show / glamour day at the Women’s Expo. I was excited, I was nervous, I was exhausted (the night before was Zack’s school fundraiser and a few of us turned it into an overnight girls night – and I didn’t get to bed until after 2am. It was a TON of fun, but I was tired… and I knew I’d be). 8:25am I showed up at the convention center, coffee mug in hand. There were five of us models all together. I think we all had the same feelings – what did we get ourselves into? We head into the expo hall and walk all the way to the back, past the stage where we would be making our runway debuts, through some curtain walls, back into the “work” area where they stored extra tables, chairs and other what-nots, into what felt like the frozen tundra which was the bathroom where we had to sit, on folding chairs, in horrible fluorescent lighting, with no heat for six hours! Showtime was until almost 2:30pm, so yes, six hours.
We all expected we would have some down time, and I think we all brought a book to read or something to do, but literally it was freezing. No heat. Just cold. At one point I asked an employee of the convention center if there was any way to get some heat back there. She told me they had tried before, but the heat didn’t come back this far (what?!) and they have actually had issues with the pipes freezing in the bathroom (where, shall I remind you, we sat for six f***-ing hours) because they couldn’t keep the temperature above forty degrees. Great.
Well, long story short, we all survived. My toes were frozen (which was probably a good thing because I couldn’t feel how much my feet hurt in those heels I was wearing – I’m pretty much a flip-flop girl), my fingers were turning blue and I was too cold to pee, but dammit I looked beautiful! My hair was all curled, my makeup done (and I don’t ever really wear anything other than chapstick or the occasional eye liner and mascara – so I couldn’t wait to scrub my face when I got home), and I was wearing a beautiful, strapless, floor length fuschia gown with ruching on the top and a slit down the side, with the most gorgeous bracelet, earrings and necklace – I felt like a Princess!
The show went well, considering it all, we all looked stunning, and I was glad it was over. I couldn’t wait to go sit in my car and blast the heat while driving home. People asked me if it was fun. Fun wouldn’t necessarily be the word I would choose, but I’m happy I did it – check that off the list! It was a good experience and now I can say most confidently that I feel pretty in pink.
The other day we were all driving to Zack’s first swim lesson of the season. Out of the blue he asks me, “Mom, how did your Mom passed away?” I could have gone one of two ways with this. I could have gone down the path of sadness, being quiet and choosing not to really talk about it, but instead I took the opposite approach. “She got really sick.” I told him. “And she couldn’t get better so she died, and now she’s up in Heaven?” he asked. “Yes.” I replied. Zack went on to say “That makes me really sad because I never got to meet her.” That just about broke my heart.
I explained to Zack (and Brayden listened quietly too) how my Mom was now an Angel up in Heaven and just because we can’t see her anymore, she sees us. I told him that it is hard for me to have the reality of he and Brayden never knowing my Mom, their Grandma, but that she knows all about them. She sees them and she is with us always. We can’t hear or touch her, but she knows all we do and she is in every breath of air we breathe, every leaf that flutters in the wind, every drop of rain or snowflake that gently hits the ground.
Zack seemed to take it okay, and I told him we could look at pictures of Grandma when we got home, and whenever he wanted. I have lots of pictures!
We got to swimming, Zack did amazing – as if I expected anything less – and we came home. I forgot to get out the pictures of my Mom (I’ll have to make myself a reminder note). It was a touching moment to have Zack ask what he did and to genuinely feel the sadness and love. To have my five-year-old with such deep expressions of emotion… it humbled me and made me proud.
Yesterday I got an email from my Dad regarding a memorial for my Mom from the hospital where she had been cared for. It also was very touching, and the timing couldn’t be any better. I posted it on Facebook, but this is what it read: “In 2005, Olga Sommer, a long-time patient of Sequoia Hospital received the unfortunate news that her lengthy battle with leukemia and lupus was nearing its end. Rather than retreating quietly, Olga and her husband, Fred, openly approached the Sequoia Hospital Foundation to see what they could do in support of the hospital’s Infusion Center that had so compassionately cared for Olga. Their first gifts helped purchase comfortable chairs for those receiving infusion treatments. Next, they funded a blanket warmer for the department, followed by a patient scale, and a television. They had only just begun. Olga passed away late in 2006 but not before instilling in Fred the importance of providing for Sequoia Hospital’s future. He continues to give passionately in her memory, and to assure that Sequoia is cared for even after his passing. Fred Sommer has joined the Foundation’s Legacy Circle by including Sequoia Hospital in his planning with a charitable gift annuity. When the new Sequoia Hospital opens this year, the Infusion Center’s waiting area will be named in memory of Olga Sommer, loving wife and mother. The dedication to Olga is a lasting honor to the impact she and Fred have had on the care provided to Sequoia’s patients.”
Yesterday was President’s Day which meant Zack had off of school. Brayden’s school was also closed, but he doesn’t usually go on Mondays anyway, so it was a “normal” at-home day for him. I usually dread school holidays because it means both boys at home, all day, no break. I was counting on the weather being sunny and warm (I should know better than to believe the weather man) so that I could send them outside to play in our wonderful backyard. Nope, I was cold all day just looking outside at the cloudy, overcast and windy day.
The day wasn’t so bad after all. I got myself up out of bed (mainly because I had to pee and I just couldn’t hold it and not think about it any longer to stay cozy and warm under the covers), and pattered over to the kitchen where I made sure my husband knew I was up (not awake, just up) and needed coffee. Good man he is. The boys were both still in jammies, munching on dry cereal, watching Dora The Explorer (not my favorite show or first choice, but every now and then something new on TV does keep them quiet and self-entertained).
I always get a warm “Good morning, Mommy!” when they see me. That alone puts a smile on my face and almost makes it enough to wake up without needing coffee… almost. Yesterday morning was no exception.
I cozied myself up on the chair with my feet up on the ottoman and a blanket covering my legs and torso. Halfway through my coffee and I’m starting to feel a bit more like a normal, living person. Zack comes over and scooches his way up on my lap, half on me, half squeezed between one of my legs and the arm of the chair. I’m glad it was comfortable for him, probably because he’s still so little, because that did not seem comfy for me. I wrapped one arm around him, the other still holding my coffee. We sat for a while, until Dora was over and my leg started falling asleep. It was nice, cuddling and snuggling with Zack.
Brayden wanted his turn, and how could I resist? He climbed up on my lap where Zack had previously been, and like a cat, took a few minutes to get situated, but finally found his cozy position. I didn’t expect Brayden to sit very long on my lap. He usually gets antsy and gets up. 45 minutes later, we’re still snuggling.
Dinner’s over, Will and I are cleaning up (well, I’m cleaning up and he’s monitoring and playing with the boys – so that dinner CAN get cleaned up), and for about the fifth time in a span of about six minutes, Zackery and Brayden are at it again. Seriously? We literally JUST had this conversation. “Leave your brother alone!” And that goes both ways – it’s no one’s fault, it’s both of them equally.
Will takes Brayden down the hall to his room for a timeout, and I tell Zack to go sit in the corner for his timeout. They giggle. This timeout thing is not working tonight. It’s not doing the trick. They think it’s a game and don’t seem to care. Will and I, however, are not so amused. In an effort to change-up the obviously not working discipline strategy, I tell Zack to try some yoga.
“You need to calm down,” I said to him. “Let’s try some yoga.”
He smiles. “I don’t know what to do.”
“Well what’s your favorite pose?” I ask him.
He tells me, but I’ve never heard of it, and honestly I can’t remember what he said, although it was quite unique (it was a few nights ago, so those memories are loooong gone). He struggles to show me, and then tells me “It’s hard. I can’t do it.”
“Pick a different pose. Do tree pose.”
“I don’t want to do tree pose. I want to do [insert name of yoga pose here].” And he tries again, but struggles. “I can’t do it.”
We go back and forth like this a few times. Me, suggesting other, simpler poses I know he can do, and he, remaining stubborn (hmmm, where does he get that I wonder?) and wanting to do his pose. By this time Brayden has wandered back out of his room and is curious yet timid about the new yoga discipline tactic. As he hears Zack and I going back and forth, he decides to come over and show me his tree pose – and a cute one it is, chubby little legs and all.
I use Brayden as the example for Zack, saying “Look at your brother! Brayden’s doing tree pose. Can you do that with him?”
Finally, and out of nowhere – and I mean I was shocked – Will looks at Zack and says, “Can you do the Sleeping Ninja?”
“Yes, the Sleeping Ninja!”
Okay by now I am laughing because here is this man who has maybe done yoga once in his life – ever – and now he’s teaching our son this crazy new (I’ve figured out made-up) yoga pose.
“How do I do it?” asks Zack.
“Lay down on your back, feet straight out and put your hands on your belly. Close your eyes and take ten deep breaths. Feel your hands move up and down with each breath.”
“Then what do I do?”
“That’s it. The Sleeping Ninja.”
How cool is that?! It took Zack a couple of seconds to get settled down and actually breathe slow enough that he could see and feel his hands moving up and down, but it worked. Thank you, Will! So, the next time the boys are getting a little bit too out of control, I’m going to whip out the Sleeping Ninja move – watch out! Maybe I’ll try it sometime too.
It’s the end of the year (not the end of the world). Farewell 2012! Goodbye all those unpleasant happenings. Goodbye stress, fatigue and exhaustion. Goodbye sadness, anger and frustration. Goodbye and good riddance!
Hello 2013. Welcome! Hello happiness, joy and love. Hello fun, spontaneity and celebration. Hello health, beauty and energy.
I am ready for a new me. I am ready to change. I am ready to start fresh and feel good – in ALL ways. So I say to 2013: BRING IT ON!
Cheers to a Happy New Year!!
I’ve had swimming on my mind lately. Perhaps (as Zack would say – he has become quite fond of that word lately) it is because we just finished another 2 week session of swim lessons, or perhaps it is because my doctor and I both discussed swimming as a great exercise for me (the knees don’t like to do much else), perhaps it is all the swimming we’ve been watching in the Olympics lately, or perhaps it is the combination of all three.
Zack is doing A-MAY-ZING with his swimming lessons. He finally got it. Doing everything at once – legs kicking, head in the water and arms doing big strokes. Although, the one thing we must work on are his ice cream scoopers. He’s got the big arms, but his hands are clenched up in fists like he’s fighting the pool (pretty cute, but he doesn’t go very far). I’m waiting for the fall swim lesson schedule to come out. Grandpa is paying for another session for his upcoming birthday. (Thanks, Dad).
I’ve also had some crazy dreams the last couple of nights. The one I remember most vividly involved both Costco and a swimming pool. In fact, Costco was the swimming pool. Or, the swimming pool was Costco – either way, it was weird. Really, really weird.
We (you know, those friends you have in your dream who in your dream you know but then you wake up and think “who were those people in my dream?”) were strolling up and down the aisles, pushing those ginormous shopping carts that are big enough to hold a house (at least a small little toy playhouse), but the whole store was a giant swimming pool up to waist deep. Everything else was exactly Costco. Again, very weird, but honestly it was a pretty fun dream!
So now, the next time the boys and I venture into the vast world of Costco, I will undoubtedly crack a smile and start to giggle, and Zack will undoubtedly say “What’s so funny Mommy?” and Brayden will undoubtedly ask “Why?”
Ah yes, the In-Laws. I know a lot of people get an icky feeling when they hear their In-Laws are coming to visit. I, on the other hand, get excited, anxious and can’t wait. I LOVE my In-Laws, and I feel blessed and grateful and lucky to feel this way. I only wish they lived closer than all the way on the other side of the country. We only get to see them once, maybe twice (on a rare, rare occasion) a year.
They’ve been here visiting – and helping (in a most wonderful kind of way – the way where you don’t have to ask them or tell them how to do something or worry about anything). They helped us pack, helped with dinner, helped with taking the boys to the park, helped with groceries (hey, it might not be inspiring, but much-needed and appreciated), helped with jammies and story time. The boys love Nana and Grandpa. Nana and Grandpa love the boys.
This morning after dropping off Zackery at school (where he must have felt like a king with his royal court accompanying him to drop-off), my husband took Nana and Grandpa to the airport. Seven days just flew by. How did it go by so quick? We must have all been having a grande old time - so much fun (because time flies when you’re having fun)! So we all drove to school and then went our separate ways (except Brayden who is enjoying his weekly playdate with babysitter extraordinaire and his little girl friend – I mean that in the most literal way. Girl Friend: a friend that is a girl. He is WAY too young to be having girlfriends – oh gosh, I don’t even want to go there in my mind yet… he’s gonna be a heartbreaker). Zack got signed in and stayed, I came here (the lovely “WC” coffee shop), and Will drove a car full of suitcases and love to the airport. It was a sad moment. Nobody cried (at least I don’t think anybody cried – Nana has a tendency, for good reason), everybody was all smiles and hugs and laughter.
Time really is flying by. All of a sudden the In-Laws have come and gone, and before I know it, it will be June (on Friday to be exact). We have 11 days until we move. WOW! It’s coming fast. Really, really fast. I’m feeling a lot of changes – good for the most part. I’m feeling a lot of anxiety (mostly about getting everything packed – I’ve lived in this house for 12 years, even before Will and I met). I’m feeling excitement – I am ready to be in our new house with a fenced in yard for the kids, on a cul-de-sac, with no stairs (BIG things on my checklist for sure – and now I’ll have them). I’m feeling gratitude – for many things, but I can’t really seem to specify or elaborate – I’m just feeling gratitude. I’m feeling overwhelm – sorry, can’t let that one off the hook yet (but I’m trying!!!). I’m feeling… a lot of things.
I think the leaving of my In-Laws is in perfect timing of closing this chapter of my life and moving on (literally). Maybe that’s why it’s such an extra emotional moment for me. They’ve left, and will never be back in that house. They’ve left, and I have 11 days before I will never be back in that house. They’ve left, and now with my family I get to write the next chapter of our lives. Everything happens for a reason – I truly believe in that, and often have to remind myself (and when I do I tend to breathe a lot easier).
I love my In-Laws. They are the best! I love my Dad too, and my Mom up in Heaven, but I think to love my In-Laws the way I do… I am just so happy about that. *smiles*
As daughters, we all grow up thinking “I’m never going to be like my Mother.”
As we get older, and a little bit wiser, we start asking ourselves “What would my Mother do?”
As we become Mothers ourselves, we can’t help but say “I’m just like my Mother.”
For some, we can’t see our Mothers on Mother’s Day.
For others, we spend every minute of every day with our Mothers.
For all, we love our Mothers.
On this Mother’s Day, may we all thank our Mothers for giving us life.
On this Mother’s Day, may we all send kisses to the sky or hugs to our heroes.
On this Mother’s Day, may we tell our Mothers just how much we love them.
Happy Mother’s Day to all Mothers everywhere, new or old, here on earth or up in Heaven.
*(This post was inspired by Marylin Warner, and her blog Things I Want To Tell My Mother)
A time to reflect on all the blessings in my life,
A time to enjoy my family – from near and far,
A time to sing and hum without needing to know all the words,
A time to forgive myself for not posting on my blog for an entire week,
A time to entertain with friends,
A time to sit quietly in the dark with only the lights on the tree,
A time to anticipate the look of happy faces,
A time to rip open the beautifully wrapped presents,
A time to be nothing more than happy.
Merry Christmas to all, and Happy Christmas Eve Eve!